Four jobs for car lovers
With all do respect to bikes, planes, boats, trains and various other forms of transportation, it is safe to say that aut
omobiles are the most popular vehicle of choice among the general American public. That said, it should come as no surprise that the automotive industry is one of the largest industries in our nation.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), as of October 2011 the wholesale trade side of the industry comprised over 300 thousand individuals, with manufacturing accounting for 700 thousand people, repair and maintenance accounting for over 800 thousand people, and retail trade providing jobs to nearly 1.7 million people.
Needless to say, there are a plethora of potential jobs in the automotive industry. Here are four such positions:
1) Automobile damage appraisers
Most appraisers are employed by either insurance companies or independent adjustment firms. A large percentage of appraisers specialize in determining the cost of vehicle repairs after an accident. This provides to the job market an insurance position that caters to those with expertise in automobiles. An auto damage appraiser must take many factors into consideration -- including mechanical, electrical, structural, body and interior damage -- before ultimately determining the cost of both labor and parts needed for the repair.
What they earn: The average salary for an automobile damage appraiser is $63,747, according to CBsalary.com. The 25th and 75th percentiles of salaries fall between $49,323 and $81,344, respectively.
2) Automobile dealer
Automobile dealers bridge the gap between auto manufacturers and the consumers that end up purchasing and using their vehicles. According to the BLS, employment in this position is actually on the decline due to industry consolidation, though there are still plenty of available jobs, especially for those with college degrees and previous sales experience. A savvy for salesmanship is essential to succeed at this job, though it is also important to have a great deal of knowledge about all the cars that are up for sale.
What they earn: The average salary for an automobile dealer is $60,697, according to CBsalary.com. The 25th and 75th percentiles of salaries fall between $47,841 and $84,860, respectively.
3) Mechanical engineering technician
Mechanical engineering technicians are not restricted to the automotive industry, though many do in fact dedicate their work toward designing cars, trucks and other automotive machinery. In addition to the duty of designing such machinery, mechanical engineering technicians must also develop and test their designs. Their requirements range from drawing out and describing the production process of a new automobile to mapping out the process regarding how that automobile will be tested for safety.
What they earn: The average salary for a mechanical engineering technician is $55,570, according to CBsalary.com. The 25th and 75th percentiles of salaries fall between $42,658 and $69,158, respectively.
4) Auto body painter
An auto body painter must first properly prepare the surface of the vehicle they're working on, after which they can perform their two main duties. The first is to paint the automobile in an attractive color and style that appeals to desired consumers. The other core duty is to coat the automobile effectively so that the vehicle is protected from corrosion as best it can.
What they earn: The average salary for an auto body painter is $46,657, according to CBsalary.com. The 25th and 75th percentiles of salaries fall between $36,544 and $70,804, respectively.